In this interview with founder of Student Survival Guide, we tried to answer the most burning questions about life in Horsens, whether it's a good idea to move here, and what does the city have to offer.
At VIA University College, you always handle your assignments with your team (Photo by Radim Theiner)
Q: What do you love about Horsens?
MICHAEL: As many other places in Denmark, Horsens is no exception when it comes to quality of living and general appearance of the city. Even though a small city, there are many amazing places you can visit and spend your time at. Me personally, I fell in love with the harbour and the nearby beach, as it is an amazing place to watch the sunset from. Very romantic with your partner, very relaxing by yourself.
Q: Did you feel differently when you first arrived?
MICHAEL: I felt very different when I first moved in, to how I feel right now, after four years. Though I believe it applies to any place where you move in with no expectations whatsoever. The biggest challenge for me was the language barrier, as Danish is fairly difficult language to grasp, initially. However, it is very unlikely that you will meet a person that doesn’t speak English, therefore you are always able to communicate.
Q: Is there anything you don’t like about Horsens?
MICHAEL: Nothing about the city itself, as there are little to no flaws about it. However, job market situation for international students can be described by many as “challenging”, especially after moving in. Job opportunities are limited, as the city is small and does not have enough jobs for all the students, especially those who can’t speak Danish. Majority of students work in warehouses or expedition centres, and only a small percentage in services, unlike bigger cities, where this segment provides university students with most jobs. One option that people tend to go with is looking for work in Aarhus, the second biggest city in Denmark, roughly 45 minutes by train from Horsens.
Harbour with many ships parked can be found behind the large public beach (photo by Radim Theiner)
Q: Is it easy to get around in Horsens?
MICHAEL: As you may or may not know, Denmark is a country of a million bicycles and Horsens is no exception. Getting around the city on bike is easy, because of all the cycle lanes built alongside the main roads. Safety-wise, drivers are very used to cyclists and generally very careful on the roads. However, a helmet is always recommended! Furthermore, buses are driving on a fixed schedule, at least 4 times per hour during day. Getting from university to the city centre takes 15 minutes and costs 20 Danish Crowns (about 2.50EUR).
Q: What can you see and do while in Horsens?
MICHAEL: Horsens can offer many free-time activities. Most famous are the music venues, with local and international bands. For sport fans, there is a big stadium, ‘Casa Arena’, hosting football matches and basketball matches. The Industrial Museum and Horsens Art Gallery are also worth mentioning. Besides this, the beaches and harbours are worth visiting as well, as they offer breath-taking views of the sea.
Q: Good shops?
MICHAEL: Even though Horsens is not the best place for shopaholics, you can still find basic shops around, such as H&M, Tom Taylor or Mango. For bigger brands, you should travel to Aarhus, as Horsens offers only a small, two storey shopping mall. When it comes to grocery shopping, there are countless options. The city centre is filled with supermarkets and grocery shops. Other than Danish supermarket chains, you can find a lot of exotic shops as well, such as Turkish, Chinese or Indian.
VBI Business Park is right behind the university (Photo by Radim Theiner)
Q: Good places to eat?
MICHAEL: Horsens has a lot of street food options as well as restaurants. Walking through the main square, Torvets, you will come across some very good pizza and kebab places. One big slice of pizza will cost you about 4EUR, but worth the money. One thing that is considered weird by many people coming here for the first time, is that Danish people like to put mayonnaise on top of their pizza. Very delicious, if you ask me, however I was very sceptical when I was about to try it for the first time.
Q: Good places to drink?
MICHAEL: Clubs, student bar or local bars, there are many options for night life. Usual destination for most young people is the student bar, run by the university. Here you can listen to live music, DJs and drink beer for student-friendly prices. Once the doors of the bar close, you can move to the city centre where most clubs and bars are situated. Most notably, there is a bar called Hekkenfeldt or a pub called Zwei Grosse Bier Bar. Here you can meet a lot of fellow students and enjoy conversation over a cold beer. One beer will cost you approximately 3EUR and one shot of alcohol about 4EUR.
Q: Good places to relax and hang out?
MICHAEL: Outside areas in the city are suited for hanging out with friends. There are plenty of parks where you can spend your days, however (due to the weather and temperatures throughout most of the year) you are likely to spend your time inside. In the university, you have many places to sit, relax, study or just hang out with friends. My university, like many others, runs a cafeteria where you can get a great cup of coffee for about 3EUR.
Fængslet or the old prison, was converted to a museum and hotel, where you can stay and experience the prisoner life (Photo by Michael)
Weather in Denmark can get really cold during autumn and winter so you should prepare for that (Photo by Radim Theiner)
Q: What is the surrounding countryside like?
MICHAEL: The countryside surrounding the city is very beautiful. Large fields and forests are worth exploring, as there is a lot of wildlife present too. Just 15 minutes’ walk from university, you get to a lakeside with forest and few benches to sit at and relax. Needlessly to say that the view is breath-taking and you can easily lose track of time while being there.
Q: What is the university like?
MICHAEL: VIA University College is very modern and provides a lot of opportunities for students. You can find a cafeteria here, canteen, library, music room and big sport centre, just across the parking lot. The buildings are accessible 24/7, meaning that at any given time you can come in and use the facilities. It runs various programs such as architecture, engineering, IT or marketing. This means that in your free time, you can find many interesting people to talk with.
Dormitories across the university, called Student Village. You should avoid them because the